Carnival: Rationalising Government subsidies

The ramifications of Government subsidy of Carnival run deep. Read More...

Separated at birth: The Carnival Edition

Creative enterprises are funny like that.
Out of nowhere, there will suddenly be two movies about a meteor endangering Earth bearing down on the box office.
Carnival can be like that too, sometimes.

The week before Carnival, for instance, I was hugely entertained by Errol Fabien’s Heart Attack, the video for which I have been granted an opportunity to share, above. Rendered a little shakily by the performer, as befits an entry in a “company calypso competition,” (Gayelle The Channel’s annual Bois), I was struck by the kind of calypso that would have been commonplace in the tents of just a decade ago.

This witty bad skylark song that would have created buzz in the listening community and drawn crowds to the tent. Fabien won the competition with the song, despite an announcer’s mix-up that gave the crown to another performer during the live broadcast.

Imagine my surprise when Hollis Liverpool, The Mighty Chalkdust, arrived on the Dimanche Gras stage with an all-new composition that struck many of the gracenotes of Fabien’s song and also won his competition with “My Heart and I.” Just another of those happy coincidences that springs up in the competitive hotbed of Carnival.

There was another surprise for me on Dimanche Gras night, as Kadafi Romney crossed the stage as Manzandaba in Flight, a costume by Brian Mac Farlane that seemed more than a little familiar.
Whenever these kinds of things happen, I remember a very generous comment that Peter Minshall shared with me years ago when he was explaining his design process.
“It’s a very limited canvas,” he said.

Minshall noted that a designer was constrained both by the shape of the human body and by the limits that a designer had to work with in terms of what the committed masquerader could carry and the average masquerader would be willing to carry.

It’s as good a bit of reasoning as any when designs overlap and calypso themes mirror each other.
Or...they could be separated at birth.

Carnival: The pointless romance

Editorial on the romance of Carnival for the Trinidad Guardian for March 03 Read More...

Calypso Rising?

Editorial written for the Carnival Tuesday edition of the Trinidad Guardian about the future of calypso for February 17. Read More...

Carnival: Two chips forward, three steps back

Trinidad Guardian editorial about the reconstructed Savannah stage

More Mas Medicine

More thoughts about how to improve Carnival that didn't fit into this week's BitDepth, (posted here). Read More...

Power of the Super Niche

I've been following some of the Carnival bloggers after getting some really valuable links off a few of the sites for the Making Mas series.
Several of these sites are really focused on the business of getting ready for Carnival Monday and Tuesday and one of the fascinating themes that cropped up in the week before Carnival was the disparity between costumes as delivered and as advertised.

Two particularly thorough and interesting entries appeared on the blogs of Saucy Diva and Carnival Jumbie.
After covering Carnival for almost a quarter of a century, an issue like this simply never occurred to me. Have a look at what the committed masquerader has to say. These are blogs that deserve to be signed.

Carnival Congratulations

Congratulations are in order to several of the people profiled in the Making Mas series. Brian Mac Farlane (MM4) won the George Bailey award for Large Band of the Year, with Trini Revellers (MM3) came in second in that competition. Tribe (MM2) placed sixth in the Large Band category.

San Fernando bandleaders Ivan and Wendy Kalicharan (MM6) won the South Band of the Year title. De BOSS (MM7) took the Lil Hart award for Small Band of the Year, closely followed by Tribal Connection (MM7) in second place. Wade Madray tied for third place in the King of Carnival competition.
View Making Mas online here.

The Road March Curse

Winning the Road March competition sometimes gets easier when the judges do you wrong. Read More...

Thoughts in concert

Carnival 2007 wrapup.

Losing the beat

Stuck in a traffic jam after a long Carnival Tuesday, I lose my mind... Read More...

Carnival Entrepreneur

Strike a pose...

Timing the riddem

Crowds gather to view a Carnival that passes by on the trot... Read More...

Pan jam

Panmen take to the streets, what happens when they cross paths? Read More...

The Rhythm of the Road

First impressions of a Carnival without the Grand Stand... Read More...

What happened to J'Ouvert?

In just a few years, the start of Carnival Monday has dwindled to a few committed masqueraders rolling around on the ground on South Quay... Read More...

Medium-size Sunday

Dimanche Gras wasn't such a big Sunday after all... Read More...

Carnival on TV

If the Government's two television stations can broadcast Carnival for free, who is going to buy the rights they are advertising for sale? Read More...